Certified dance instructors who have trained with Arthur Murray, Fred Astaire, and the National Dance Council of America impart ballroom, Latin, and swing moves to dancers in all-level and wedding-specific courses. The main ballroom's mammoth disco ball, grown from a sequin planted on the roof, tosses light across a blacked-out ceiling that, along with high-tech lighting, fosters a nightclub atmosphere during weekly dance parties.
Since its self-titled debut in 1981, musical powerhouse Duran Duran has sold more than 100 million albums worldwide, fusing innovative lyrics and catchy melodies into a distinctive, peppy sound. Although best known for their cartography skills and era-defining hits such as "Hungry Like the Wolf" and "Rio," the foursome also refined the art of music videos in the ‘80s and honed an edgy, influential fashion sense. Energized from the success of their critically acclaimed 13th album, All You Need is Now, which escalatored up to No. 1 on the iTunes album charts, the Fab Five will regale audiences with danceable classics as well as new tunes and a collection of antique wooden noisemakers.
Top of the Hops Beer Festival Stretching along the northern Gulf Coast, The Wharf Marina serves as the picturesque venue for the Top of the Hops Beer Festival, a celebration of the craft-beer industry. Abita Brewing Company, a Louisiana outfit known for its large variety of seasonal and flagship brews, joins local sponsors, including Maggie's Bottle & Tail and Alabama Gulf Seafood, in hailing the beloved concoctions made of barley, wheat, and hop leaves known for their ability to inspire Elizabethan conversational skills. The festival introduces patrons to tastes of more than 150 craft brews and offers a variety of beer-related seminars.
The five members of Blackberry Smoke sear a new brand into the hide of Southern rock with their signature brew of country, bluegrass, metal, and gospel influences. Frontman Charlie Starr will pitch anthemic lyrics about coolers packed with cold beers and electronic cigarettes off Duling Hall's stained-glass windows. Gearing up to release a third full-length album within the year ahead, the quintet is currently swinging around the country on the strength of singles such as "Up in Smoke" and "Good One Comin' On" and the funding of using their flowing rock locks in shampoo commercials. Quick-riffing openers Matt Poss Band plant their Midwestern country rock into the fertile Mississippi soil with their brand-new album Buy the Ticket, Take the Ride.
For decades, Hal & Mal’s has lured locals into its cheerful pub with frothy brews and refreshing cocktails. Live music floods the hangout almost every night of the week, offering patrons a metronome by which to pace their sipping, chewing, and socializing. The eatery's menu of solid sustenance is filled to the brim with home-style belly warmers, shining a spotlight on Cajun creations like gumbo ($5.50 for a cup, $6.75 for a bowl), red beans and rice ($8.50 for a whole order, $6.50 for a half), and po’ boys sandwiches ($8.75-$9.25), served by friendly waiters, or, if you opt for the more authentic experience, gators. Swing by on a Tuesday night to test your trivia and post-Monday noshing skills.
Since 1993, Cirque Dreams' family-friendly variety extravaganzas have called upon a cast of acrobats, strongmen, and daredevils to wring the oohs and aahs out of audiences with tremendous feats of derring-do. During each themed production, more than 100 performers garbed in dazzling outfits twirl high in the air, contort their bodies into impossible shapes, and solve long division problems to earn uproarious applause from the crowd. At Dream Studios in Pompano Beach, Florida, hundreds of contracted artists from around the world develop their skills and prep for Cirque Dreams performances under the direction of Neil Goldberg and his team of choreographers, contortionists, and designers.